Yes, this is it, the “Wizard”! I actually found the ship moored right in Seattle, Wa. What a treat, as I am a great fan of the Deadliest Catch Show on the Discover Channel.
Captain Keith Colburn
Captain Keith Colburn of Redmond, Washington, has served at the helm of the Wizard for the last 14 years. In 2005 he took a huge risk in purchasing the Wizard without any of her valuable crab quota. The Wizard is a World War II era ship that was converted into a fishing vessel in 1978. The boat, a perennial top five producer, is one of the largest vessels in the fleet at 155 feet in length. Being forced to lease his entire crab quota, Keith struggled in his first year as captain of the Wizard.
Joining Keith are his brother Monte, an experienced deckhand who takes over as skipper for the last half of opilio season; first mate Gary Soper, a fishing veteran of 20 years; and deckhands Art Peterson, Lenny Lekanoff, Crosby LeVeen and Nick Maurer. Keith is also keeping a close eye on his greenhorns this season. One is only 21, the other is 10 years older, but both are being tested by the Bering in their own ways…
Keith started out as a deckhand on the boat in 1988, and eventually took over the skipper duties in 1994. When the owner was looking to sell the boat, Keith took a gamble and purchased it in 2005, knowing he would have to lease virtually all of his crab quota since he didn’t own the boat when IFQs (individual fishing quotas) were issued to boat owners earlier that year. The IFQ situation forces Keith to lease his quota from other boats year after year, as well as hire cheaper greenhorns to keep his costs down — making the stakes much higher.
Always the adventure seeker, Keith recently ran with the bulls in Pamplona. He lives outside Seattle, Wash., with his wife and two children.